Kent 239 for 8 (Nash 98) beat Warwickshire 238 (Chopra 65, Patel 50) by one runScorecardIan Bell made a fluent 35 © Getty Images Enlarge
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Brendan Nash's best one-day performance for Kent proved decisive as they squeezed past Warwickshire with a frantic one-run victory at Edgbaston.
Nash, the former West Indies batsman, made an unbeaten 98 that lifted his side to 239 for 9. Warwickshire slumped to 185 for 8 in reply with 55 wanted from six overs but Jeetan Patel ensured a fluctuating contest went down to the wire
Patel set about the bowlers with two sixes and six fours in a whirlwind 27-ball innings that threatened to pull off a dramatic rescue act for Warwickshire. It eventually came down to the last ball and two runs needed, but Patel's heroics in making 50, his best one-day score, came to nothing when we was run out by Adam Ball.
Kent were well in charge when the spin bowling of James Tredwell and his 21-year-old partner Adam Riley knocked Warwickshire off course. Riley crucially dismissed William Porterfield lbw for 47, and Tredwell captured the prized wicket when Varun Chopra was well caught at mid-off after making 67 in his build-up for England Lions duty later in the week.
While Chopra played a measured innings, it was a mixed day for Warwickshire's other England candidates, either those in the Test team or others pushing for selection. Ian Bell looked in imperious form in making 35, driving successive sixes off Mark Davies over long-on, but failed to clear midwicket off Matt Coles. Jonathan Trott made only 3 before nicking a catch off Davies.
This came on top of a testing time for Chris Woakes and Chris Wright. The new-ball bowlers, who will be with Chopra in the Lions squad to meet New Zealand at Grace Road on Thursday, conceded 101 runs between them, although Woakes did pick up a couple of wickets.
Kent may have promised more than they delivered after losing the toss. Rob Key made a brisk start with 44 until pulling offspinner Patel to midwicket, and as much as Nash kept the board ticking over, he struck only seven boundaries from 106 deliveries.
Others attempted to be more destructive, notably Adam Ball with five fours in a rapid 28 and Coles with successive sixes off Woakes in reaching 20 from 11 balls.
That Kent were unable kick on in the middle overs of their innings was mostly due to Darren Maddy on his first appearance of the season. Maddy, 39 later this month, took two wickets in five balls and held three catches, the first of these removing Key after a stand of 85 with Nash.